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Chicagoist Presents The Campaignys

By Amy Hart in Arts & Entertainment on Mar 6, 2006 5:44PM

2006_03_sparks.bmpIn case you missed it last night, the big awards show was incredible. No, not that awards show. We’re talking about the awards Chicagoist gave out to politicians for outstanding achievement in campaign commercials—The Campaignys. Because none of the nominees were present, the members of the Academy of Campaign Commercial Arts and Sciences accepted their awards (cans of Sparks, a drink near and dear to our blood alcohol levels) and drank them on their behalf. Without further ado, Chicagoist presents the winners of the Campaignys:

Best Performance by a Robot: Edwin Eisendrath. Eisendrath’s unnatural hand movements, stilted speaking style, fake smile, and way of looking just to the side of the camera kept us from listening to anything he actually said.

Dumbest Reason to Vote for a Candidate: Rod Blagojevich. Blago gets the nod because he wants us to vote for him for having another kid. Oh yeah, and he's a little bit wiser now.

2006_03_oberweis ad.jpgBest Use of Truthiness: Jim Oberweis. Oberweis’ March commercials attacking Topinka feature made-up newspaper headlines. His campaign manager said the “text is excerpted” from stories in the papers, but that isn’t really the case.

Best Performance by Jim Edgar: Edgar shows up in an ad for Topinka and blasts Oberweis' attacks against her.

Best Performance by Barack Obama: Obama showed up in a commercial for Tammy Duckworth, but he wins for his Brokeback-ish praise for Treasurer candidate Alexi Giannoulias.

Best Performance by a Politician in a Supporting Role: Forrest Claypool. His mere two words of “BE SPECIFIC!” played over and over again in a commercial for John Stroger still haunt us.

Best Use of Vile Spewed at Opponent: Forrest Claypool. Obviously angered by Stroger's repeated use of his "BE SPECIFIC!" line, Claypool comes out swinging and accuses of Stroger of going after his record because he has no positive record of his own to stand on. Claypool also calls Stroger "the negative campaigner of the year," quite a statement since it's only March. Ummm, we're the ones handing out the awards here, Mr. Claypool.

Worst Line: Bill Brady. In an early commercial Brady said, "I build homes that make it tough on termites. Now, I’m running for governor to make it really tough on taxes." Say what?

Best Personalization of an Issue: Tammy Duckworth. Duckworth brags to voters that she received the best healthcare available after being injured while on duty in Iraq, and says she wants to fight for quality healthcare for all.

Outstanding Achievement in Hair and Makeup: Judy Baar Topinka. We get the red hair; it's a trademark. However, Topinka might want to think about neutralizing her makeup. It is so bright and heavy that we find ourselves distracted from whatever message she is trying to send us. We're sure whatever that message is will be updated to include her endorsement by the Sun-Times News Group.

Worst Commercial: Jim Oberweis. His first commercial was disturbing and leaves us asking too many questions... What kind of factory is he in? Why aren't the workers wearing safety equipment? How long did it take him to check everybody's green card? Why does he want to be in politics if he hates it so much? Did Jack Ryan consult on this ad? Does anybody in his family dislike milk?

Best Commercial: Ron Gidwitz. Gidwitz partners with his lieutenant governor nominee Steve Rauschenberger to form the "team for change." Kind of like a political Batman and Robin. Giddy and Rauschy's spot is short and relies on a voiceover to deliver highlights of their plan to address ethics, the budget, and school funding. Gidwitz just won the endorsement of the Tribune, so we hope he amends this ad to feature him saying "Suck on that, Judy!"

We hope you enjoyed the inaugural Campaignys. Due to heavy Sparks intake, we may have forgotten a few awards, so feel free to tell us what we skipped in the comments.